Step It Up
Keep It Simple
4 sticks unsalted butter, softened
2 lbs sifted powder sugar
1/2 tsp salt
3 tbsp cream, milk or water
1 tsp vanilla or 1 tsp vanilla bean paste
Cream butter, add liquids & salt... add in powder sugar slowly. Mix until fluffy, about 3 minutes.
Note: You can alter this with any extract to make different flavors or add fruit puree
The TA-DA!!! Principle
Years ago, when I was a stay at home mother with 5 small children, my days were often filled with 100's of things to do daily. I don't suppose that is any different these days for those brave women who still choose this profession in life. I found myself with projects that needed to be done and I would plow along and work to accomplish these endless tasks. The endless laundry, the three meals a day, getting the kids off to school and then picking them up.. on and on it went.
Every day was filled with lots to do and lots of things accomplished and most of it unheralded in the world or by my family. There was no plaque for employee of the month, no paycheck, no pats on the back, no lunches out with the boss for a job well done.. unless you count all the crusts of PB and J sandwiches I could ever wish for!
For example I do not ever remember anyone ever coming up to me and tell me "Great job mom for completing 20 loads of laundry!" Or remarking that the kitchen stove looked particularly lovely after I spent an hour and two fingernails scrubbing off the burned on yuck! Nope most of my work was not noticed by the outside world or even those close to me.
That was until I created the "TA-DA" in my life.
It started one day when my sweetheart came home and asked.. like he did most days.. "so how was your day today?" I decided that I wanted some good old fashioned praise for my hard work that day. So with much drama I walked to a hall closet, which I can only describe as a junk closet.....you know the ones where you open the door throw in an item and hastily close the door hoping something else does not escape! With the flinging open of the door I threw my hands in the air like one of those magicians at the conclusion of a great illusion and, shouted "TA-DA!"
My sweetheart was shocked and we both giggled and he looked into the closet, probably expecting a rabbit to appear, and saw that it was no longer the junk closet but it was now all organized and beautiful. Now to his credit he took the cue and spent a couple of moments telling me how great it looked and wonderful I was!
And so began my love affair with the "TA DA" principal. When I would can 25 quarts of peaches.. at the end of a long day as my sweetheart would come into the kitchen I would position him in front of the pantry… fling open the day and shout "TA-DA!" When I would make a new cookie... I would put the plate in front of my kids and shout "TA DA!"
Now you may think this has stopped in my life… after all I am older and now I have accomplished so much in my life that surely there is no need for this to continue.. but nope. Just last month I got a new wireless speaker for my home. And after reading the instructions I figured out all by my little old self how to get it to work with my computer AND my cell phone!!! TA DA!!! I could not wait to tell my techie son how cool his "ancient" mother still is because she could do something techie!
Now there is a point to this story. There is much about our lives that is praise worthy. It may not be praised by the world but it is praise worthy none the less. It is a good thing to be learning, growing and accomplishing. In the 13th Article of Faith it says that we are to be seeking after things which are "lovely, of good report or praiseworthy." We read of TA DA moments in the scriptures for those that stayed the course or accomplished hard things. For example we can look at the story of the Stripling Warriors as they volunteered to go to battle against the Lamanites. In Alma 57:26Helaman wrote:
"And now, their preservation was astonishing to our whole army, yea, that they should be spared while there was a thousand of our brethren who were slain. And we do justly ascribe it to the miraculous power of God, because of their exceeding faith in that which they had been taught to believe--that there was a just God, and whosoever did not doubt, that they should be preserved by his marvelous power."
These young men had been taught to believe and not doubt by good mothers... TA DA! These young men had "exceeding faith in that which they had been taught"… TA DA! God had preserved their lives "by his miraculous power" ... TA DA! Not one single young man was lost event though a thousand around then had died. .. TA DA!
In our own lives there are TA DA moments, big and small, if we would just take a moment to acknowledge them. We completed 100% of our home teaching. .. TA DA! We went to the temple this month... TA DA! We did not yell at the driver who cut us off in traffic... TA DA! We did not overspend our budget this month ... TA DA! We completed our taxes… TA DA! With the help of the atonement we overcame one of many weaknesses and made it strength... TA DA!
We should celebrate those TA DA moments in our lives and look for the TA DA moments in the lives of those around us so we can celebrate them together. And if helps just a little to celebrate I invite you to throw your hands in the air and shout "TA DA" for yourself and for those you love when you see the little and the big accomplishments of in our lives. It is my belief that as we continue to strive in our lives and we should recognize that our TA DA moments are moving closer to our Heavenly Father and we are becoming more like him… step by step… precept by precept… until we are worthy to enter back into the presence of God and I believe that will be the best and most humbling TA DA moment of all!
I'm doing good. It's awesome here. My companions name is Elder Nelson, he's awesome. We are starting to become friends and its awesome to teach and learn with him. The Dear Elder thing is working fine. I got your letter. The MTC is awesome and teaching is so easy here because the spirit is so strong here. It's hard and I am super tired all the time, but I'm learning so much here....and I can't wait to go share the gospel with people. I was mad a zone leader last night and I get to help next week introducing the new elders and sisters in our district. I got my flight plans today I leave onwill be landing first in Georgia and then transferring to a flight to NEW YORK. Ha Ha. Sorry this email is all over the place. I just have been having a lot of things happening. Oh yeah, I SAW TREVOR MC LAWS! He is doing awesome! I might be able to get a picture to you guys some time, but he is doing awesome. He was so happy and It's awesome to see someone I know here. We started teaching lessons and stuff the first day and we haven't stopped. I didn't know they had real investigators here that they let the missionaries teach. Well, I'm gonna write Mom and anyone else I can now. Ha Ha. Thank you for helping me get here. I am so happy to learn and to grow as a missionary, and sharing God's purpose with others and helping to bring them to Christ.
P.S. My P-Day is Friday. Ha Ha